Yesterday, a Federal District Court in Tennessee found that the Tennessee Sex Offender Registry, as applied to the Plaintiff, violates the Constitution.

The Court found; that the restrictions of SORVTA are much like traditional punishments of shaming, banishment, and probation, particularly when those restrictions are imposed for life, that the registry imposes an affirmative disability or restraint on Plaintiff, that permanence of SORVTA’s restrictions, based solely on his prior offense rather than a present potential of re-offense, weigh in favor of traditional punitive aims, among other things.

The Court concludes that the effect of lifetime compliance with SORVTA is punitive as it relates to Plaintiff. While the court made clear that this only applies to the plaintiff, the facts and circumstances are likely common to most on the Tennessee registry prior to 2004.

A copy of the decision can be found here: TN Doe v. Rausch

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